So I decided to flank my vacation filled with sausages, beer and schnitzel with 2 10K races… one right before I left and one a few days after I got back. It’s ok, it’s for a good cause! I’ll be honest though… I was still jet lagged when I ran it and the heavy food from my trip didn’t help at all. All in all, it was a great experience and it was nice to know that this event is actually giving back, not just to the community, but to the planet as well.
The Great Climate Race is the first of its kind here in Vancouver. It’s a 2.5k, 10k, and virtual race where a portion of entry fees goes towards local solar projects. Run by co-founders Benjamin West and Mari MacMillan, this event raised awareness on the serious issue of climate change while at the same time providing a family-friendly event for Vancouverites & beyond to enjoy and get fit. I wrote more about the Great Climate Race in this post here. This is the inaugural year for the Great Climate Race and in my opinion, race organizers did a fantastic job executing it. Not to mention, the entire event is very environmentally-friendly and was even 100% solar powered.
See how I did on Strava here.
There’s not much to say about package pickup, other than it was quick. They held it at one of their sponsors’ shops, Patagonia. All I got was the bib and that was it.
The 2.5k was a loop of Lost Lagoon… but I didn’t do that one, I did the 10k race, which looped around Stanley Park. The start/finish area was at the park by Second Beach Pool. I was able to take a bus to English Bay and from there it was just a 1k jog to the starting line. It was a good warmup. The atmosphere was lively as the 2.5k runners were just finishing up. I saw my friend @dineoutwithdee finish her race and caught up with her before my race started.
The corrals were self-seeding. Pace polar bears were available so I lined up behind the 60 minute bear. The race started on time and went along the north side of Lost Lagoon before doubling back to get on the seawall. We ran it in the counterclockwise direction and I still think it’s the easier way to go around the seawall 😛 Thankfully it was a beautiful day, runners were able to enjoy the beautiful scenery the seawall had to offer. True to their zero-waste goal, there was 1 aid station that I saw but they didn’t provide paper cups. Runners were warned well in advance, their communication with us was very good. At some points, there were also live bands and cheer stations with signs. Those were welcome sights for us weary runners who needed a boost. The race was timed by SportStats which is always a plus.
There were lots of people at the finish line cheering and an announcer who called out your name as you crossed. There were some snacks given out I think but I didn’t get any. I just found friends right away to socialize and take photos with (Bradley on the Run & November Project tribemates). The atmosphere was happy and vibrant and the Solar Bear was making rounds taking selfies with people. I ran home after this to make my entire run a total of 15k.
The swag came in the form of a virtual race bag and a hat. There was no mention of a medal on the website but I was surprised to see volunteers handing out these little fabric leaf medals to everyone who finished. Nice touch, guys! I also like the idea of a virtual race bag. No need to cut a tree to give out coupons 🙂
How Did I Do?
I had no expectations of this race since I felt sluggish and tired from our German adventure. Truth be told, I had to stop a few times cuz I can’t get my breathing right. Thankfully it wasn’t too terrible, I finished at 1:02:09. It could’ve definitely been worse and my sights were now set to my fourth and final half marathon of the year… with little to no training leading up to it. Eek.
Would I Do This Again?
Of course! Nice course, chip-timed, great company, with focus on giving back to the environment. Who can say no to that?